Excerpt: The Need For Speed series has suffered from a severe identity crisis in recent years, a problem that EA and Criterion seemed to have solved with Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit in 2010, one of my personal favourites of the franchise. Need For Speed: The Run, however, threw shade on the series once more before Criterion attempted to correct the course again with 2012′s Need For Speed: Most Wanted.
Excerpt: Need for Speed: Rivals is the Dark Souls of racing games. Now I know what you’re thinking but just bear with me for a moment. In the fictional open-world of Redview County illegal street racing is king and the cops fight back with supercars of their own. Playing as a racer you accumulate “speed points” as you compete in various events, escape the attention of an unrelenting police force and cruise the world.
Conclusion: This means that if you already have a PS4, then you’ll probably buy it on that system anyways. For those of you that have a PS3, plan getting a PS4 in the future, and aren’t sure if you should wait or not, the answer is that if you care about graphics, then wait. There is no real difference in the gameplay between the two versions, especially when the frame-rate is locked at 30 fps, so if you don’t care about graphics, then go ahead and grab it on PS3.
Conclusion: Need for Speed Rivals’ boisterous and brash open-world driving design gets enormous mileage thanks to some amazingly fluid online functionality. This is a stand-out launch game in every regard, and if you have any interest in this sort of action-heavy racing, here’s the best way to experience it this year.
Excerpt: Good and evil is always a pleasant dichotomy to work with, especially in games where such choices are a primary gameplay mechanic. While Need for Speed Rivals doesn't feature the depth and complexity of narrative-driven games like inFamous or Mass Effect , the good/evil dynamic is a well-realized feature made better by the online features of the PS4.
Excerpt: series has been a constant on consoles for almost 20 years, and while there have been many ups and downs for the series, it has always drawn interest from racing fans. The series has also seen its fair share of developers, from EA Canada, Slightly Mad Studios, Criterion, and now Ghost Games.
Conclusion: Concept: Ghost Games’ first Need for Speed title successfully melds single- and multiplayer to create a racing experience unlike any other
Graphics: Drop dead gorgeous. Racing at breakneck speeds with a storm of leaves zipping past your car and police lights blurring on the road is a welcome visual overload
Sound: Heavy-handed voicework provides laughs, and the arrangement of driving techno beats blends well with the heart-racing excitement
Playability: A silky smooth...
Conclusion: Rivals serves as a refinement of ideas and principles established over the last three iterations of Need for Speed. This can lead to a feeling of sameness bleeding over Rival’s rough edges while also serving as a condensed interpretation of the series' better ideas. In this regard Rivals acts as a natural step forward, lessons learned and amended properly.